Kylian Mbappe shines as France edge past Argentina

Kylian Mbappe shines as France edge past Argentina

In 2010 it was Ozil and Di Maria. In 2014 it was James Rodriguez. In 2018, it's Kylian Mbappe.

Azeem Siddiqui

Recent World Cups have had a habit of highlighting a new name in the world of football, and this year it will be no different. In 2010, it was the emergence of Germany’s Mesut Ozil and Argentina’s Angel Di Maria, where as in 2014, it was Colombia’s James Rodriguez who stole the show with his creativity and the famous wonder strike against Uruguay.

Four years down the line, it seems like this year it’s going to be France’s Kylian Mbappe, who pretty much single-handedly knocked out the 2014 runners-up with a performance that would make him the hottest property in the world of football.

French dominance

The large part of the first-half was all about the domination of the French team, who kept getting behind the Argentine defence and deservedly opened the scoring in the 13th minute, courtesy of a penalty from Antoine Griezmann after a thunderous run from Mbappe enticed Marcos Rojo to commit a foul inside the penalty area.

However, Argentina made a grand comeback in the late stages of the first period after Angel Di Maria’s wonder goal in the 41st minute, which ended the first session with a 1-1 score line.

Mbappe’s time

Argentina started second half of the match as the better side and earned a well-deserved lead when Lionel Messi’s shot was deflected by Gabriel Mercado in 48th minute to make it 2-1.

But Les Bleus made a stunning comeback courtesy a thunderbolt strike from Benjamin Pavard in the 57th minute who made it 2-2.

From there on, it was just Mbappe’s time as he toyed with Argentina’s defence on more than one occasion and sealed a famous win for 1998 champions.

The 19-year-old first scored a brilliant goal in the 64th minute to make it 3-2 for the eventual winners, and then sealed the win with another past Franco Armani just four minutes later to make it 4-2.

Argentina did manage to get one back with the 92nd minute from the strike of Sergio Aguero, but it was too little too late for La Albiceleste.